What Is Coffee Meets Bagel? Is CMB A Good Dating App? How Does Coffee Meets Bagel Work? Is It Free? CMB Prompts & CMB Dating App Review.
Coffee Meets Bagel has been around since 2012 and famously appeared on Shark Tank where it declined an offer to be bought out by Mark Cuban. It’s been widely marketed as a relationship focused app with an emphasis on quality over quantity.
Despite the odd naming, CMB has done well for itself and the latest series B funding has allowed it build out the product, grow the customer base and make a name for itself in the crowded dating app market. It’s gained a solid reputation among its users and it’s one of the top apps I recommend to clients in addition to Hinge and Bumble.
With that said, there are a few things I often hear from clients when using the apps.
Is CoffeeMeetsBagel free? How much does Coffee Meets Bagel Premium cost per month?
The basic functions of the app are free but it costs extra beans (in app currency) to get more profiles visible to you each day so that you can message them. There are ways to get some free beans by performing certain activities but those are limited.
Depending on the subscription term, the cost for CMB Premium ranges from $20 per month (6-month term) to $35 per month (monthly subscription).
Coffee Meets Bagel Beans: In App Currency
Coffee Meets Bagel operates on a bean currency kind of like Monopoly money. This approach has a gaming element to it which may cater to the young demographics of the app. While the basic service is free, it costs beans for certain premium features like read receipts, extra bagels and more. CMB offers free beans if you do certain activities in the app if you refer people, follow them on social media and provide feedback on matches. I think these are great but the underlying recurring focus on using the bean, bagel and coffee lingo is a bit odd. Beans are needed to like extra profiles than allotment provided.
CMB Lingo: Discovery vs. Suggested
The terminology is a bit nauseating. CMB refers to people in the Discover tab as “the schmear on top.” There is no explanation given and a bit confusing other than beyond those in your suggested queue. According to Coffee Meets Bagel, they might be those outside of your preferences but still good possible matches.
A bagel is a potential match. Suggested are profiles the app deems are the most compatible to you and are served at noon (well after most people consume bagels in real life). Liking bagels in the suggested tab is free, no cost to you.
Activity Reports and Read Receipts, CMB Premium
The premium version of Coffee Meets Bagel offers additional perks including activity reports that note how many times someone initiates a first message, read receipts so you can see who reads your messages. These features nudge users to rely on apps to help make decisions and further distances users from analyzing queues, asking questions, taking risks and putting oneself out there – the pillars of dating that have worked for ages.
Another feature of the premium account is ‘Unlimited Woo’. This allows you to send flowers and expedite when someone you like can see your profile. Sometimes there is a delay in the process. There is also an opportunity to receive an additional 15% beans in the bean shop on purchases. The most valuable part of the subscription is daily free takes on discover (up to 8 per day). In contrast, users can expect up to 21 profiles in the suggested tab. This can change (lower) depending on your location, demographics, and filters/preferences.
Communication skills and reading people are life-long skills, offline and online and dating apps that suggest you trust them to make these decisions is unsettling. There is no need to know if someone read your message. If someone is interested they will reply, promptly. There is no need to know what percentage of the time someone messages first (it could be they are proactive and send a high number of messages or it can mean they are super popular and receive tons of messages first). There is no context provided with this metric.
Coffee Meets Bagel Bios, Answers to Prompts
Prompts for bios can be great, they can inspire creativity, quirkiness and random anecdotes. They also can encourage people to be brief or unoriginal. If you Google CMB prompts you will get lists of suggested answers to use. If you are brave, you can really create a stellar bio and answers but if not, you can look like every other profile on the app given the limiting 3 question prompt of I like, I am, I like it when my date.
As for the bios themselves, I have noticed Coffee Meets Bagel profiles are a bit thin especially at the free level (especially compared to Hinge and Bumble). Many people have incomplete bios, vague answers or lack important details that are essential in evaluating a potential date. I am all for not pouring out your life story and every detail about yourself including job title, company, etc but there bare minimum amount of information users need to provide to be thorough and interesting and CMB does not encourage this minimum threshold.
Coffee Meets Bagel claims those accounts with longer bios tend to fare better than others so that is one thing to keep in mind when crafting your bio.
Coffee Meets Bagel, New Prompts (May 18, 2020).
CMB updated both iOS and Android apps but with different new features on each platform. Main updates below.
iOS update 5/18: New Prompts!
I’m hopelessly bad at:
What terrifies you?
The bravest thing I’ve ever done:
Who should pay on the first date?
What never fails to make you laugh?
Favorite weird food combo:
The most important traits in a partner…
What makes a relationship special?
What’s your love language?
What’s one thing you love about your self?
Before we go on a date, you should know…
What would you title this chapter in your life?
You know you’re having a great first date when…
Among my friends, I’m best known for
Usually a set up for biased feedback
Android update 5/21: Now, you can send a message with your Like even before connecting.
Coffee Meets Bagel Demographics, Customer Base
The most notable things I have heard from people using Coffee Meets Bagel is the lack of profiles on the app, not enough men or the amount of Asian users on the app. Coffee Meets Bagel has a high level of women on the app compared to Tinder but the limited number of profiles has led some users to rely more on Hinge and Bumble. This chart was from 2014 and although it is dated, it is likely the similar story today.
How To Get More Beans on Coffee Meets Bagel
Filling out your profile, referring friends, sharing on social media and providing feedback on why you passed on bagels can help you get more beans. Occasionally CMB will have offers for free beans if you log into the app or reply to a bagel. Years ago, CMB offered you additional beans for logging in each day for up to the first 7 days of creating a profile.
Accidental Unmatching on Coffee Meets Bagel
If you managed to unmatch a bagel there is a small chance you can match again. Contact customer service for assistance.
Coffee Meets Bagel is a great app and the relationship focus mantra is great for those that prioritize something meaningful in their lives but please note the traction is not as high as other app alternative and the Discover vs Suggested, bean currencies and limited information on profiles might be too much for you to put up with.
Coffee Meets Bagel suggests treating your entire profile like an icebreaker. Make sure you fill your profile thoroughly and thoughtfully to make it easier for matches to initiate conversations and reply to messages.
Skip The Line, Send Flowers
CMB has a feature where users can ‘skip the line’ by buying flowers to move more quickly through lengthy queues of users they have liked. Coffee Meets Bagel claims users can be seen up to 3x faster with this feature but just because you might be seen faster doesn’t mean it will improve your profile. My advice, work on yourself, photos, prompts, interests, career, wardrobe, style passions etc to be seen in the best light.
About Eddie Hernandez
Eddie Hernandez is a professional photographer specializing in natural, candid online dating photos. Featured in the SFGate, ABC7News, East Bay Express, Salon; contributor to Good Men Project, Plenty Of Fish and Meddle. In addition to photos, he provides guidance around app choice, bio optimization, messaging techniques, wardrobe advice and date ideas. https://eddie-hernandez.com/contact/
Dating Profile Critique
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Online Dating Frequently Asked Questions (Photos, App Choice, Wardrobe, Messaging, Bios and More): https://eddie-hernandez.com/online-dating-frequently-asked-questions/